Owning a small business has so many benefits. But being a sole-trader, launching a startup, or even managing a small business with a small team can be challenging, and at times an isolating experience. But small business support groups can help.
The opportunities offered by a business networking group are numerous and can not only make a big difference to the growth of a business but also have a positive impact on the business owners own mental health.
Why join a business support network?
- To grow networks and develop business contacts.
- Business advice.
- Share useful information.
- Develop new skills and access business training opportunities.
- Build potential partnerships.
- PR - Boost the reputation of your own business in a positive manner.
- To meet and talk to like-minded business people with similar experiences.
There are a broad range of small business support groups out there, and it’s important to find one that suits your core values and personal needs. However it’s worth remembering that whatever group you join, opportunities won’t magically appear, business owners may have to put in some level of work to really reap the rewards.
In this round-up we focus on some of the business support platforms founded by female business experts. All of these women believe in supporting others, and also integrate purpose into their business support platforms by donating to charity.
Parents in Biz is a platform for parent business owners founded by entrepreneur and mum of five, Bridget Daley. Bridget is no stranger to wearing multiple hats and is passionate about empowering other parents to design a work style that suits them and their family. She supports and empowers parent business owners to manage the tightrope of starting and growing a business and having harmony at home. Parents in Biz also offers members a hub, events and produces a magazine.
Small Business Britain is the UK’s leading champion of small businesses, supporting all 5.8 million small businesses in the UK – no matter their location, their sector, or their ambition level.
Michelle Ovens CBE is the founder of Small Business Britain and runs it’s campaigns – f:Entrepreneur, i:Entrepreneur and The Small Awards. She is also the director of Small Business Saturday UK, a grassroots not-for-profit campaign and is responsible for delivering and growing the campaign across the UK since 2013.
Michelle also works closely in advising both the government and the private sector on small business policy and engagement, and is a regular presence in the national media.
Small Business Britain is an incredibly supportive network and Michelle herself often is seen on the frontline talking to small businesses and offering advice. They have raised awareness of important issues and donated to good causes including homeless charity Shelter and Refuge - the specialist support to women and children fleeing domestic abuse.
The Single Mums Business Network was launched by Julie Hawkins to celebrate and promote hard working single mums whilst helping members raise awareness of their businesses.
‘Most people still think that single mums have opted for a certain lifestyle choice but the SMBN stands to change those negative perceptions.’ - founder, Julie Hawkins.
Julie believes that everyone has a responsibility to give something back, and help others where possible, and by donating to charity through SMBN she aims to “ help those who give others hope” .
The Single Mums Business Network currently donates 5% of membership fees to the charity Purple Shoots who helped Julie in her hour of need. Purple Shoots empowers people who are disadvantaged by circumstances, health or disability to become entrepreneurs.
Simply Great Britain is a growing network for micro-businesses founded by experienced business owner Emily Whitehead. The membership community was created as a place for often forgotten micro-businesses to be seen, heard and helped all year round, and to tell a new story about the micro-businesses that are often at the heart of communities.
Simply Great Britain supports and connects micro businesses and their owners through the Simply Club. It provides professional business support, resources, free training, a platform and a community in which to thrive.
For every new Membership to the Simply Great Britain Member's Club £5 is donated to the charity Fareshare - UK’s national network of charitable food redistributors.
Women's Business Club is a multi-award-winning global community network that connects and supports business women on a local and national level. Members can join a local networking group or mastermind event to break through to the next level of success.
Founded by Angela De Souza, it is a community of career women and female entrepreneurs who sincerely care for their members and empower them to succeed. Angela herself has always been passionate about bringing out the potential locked away inside of people and has years of experience travelling the UK as a speaker sharing her own experiences.
Talented Ladies Club is an online magazine and training provider with a mission to unlock the potential of women. They publish daily content to over 100,000 monthly visitors and help people start and grow successful businesses and freelance careers through online masterclasses and courses.
The idea for Talented Ladies Club was born when freelance copywriter Hannah Martin realised that so many of her friends were struggling to resume their careers after having children.
As the club's influence has grown, it’s become increasingly important to Hannah and her team that they use this influence for good.
Talented Ladies Club donate 1% of their turnover to the charity MicroLoan Foundation - who enable some of the most vulnerable women in Malawi, Zambia and Zimbabwe to work their own way out of poverty by giving them the opportunity to build a business.
Work for Good would like to thank all of the business support groups featured in this article for their ongoing donations to charity via our fundraising platform.
About Work for Good:
At Work for Good we think doing good through business shouldn’t be difficult.
Most businesses are unaware that you need a Commercial Participation Agreement in place before you can start raising money for charity through sales and publicising it.
This legal requirement can cause headaches for both the business and the charity. Through our fundraising platform, businesses can create a Commercial Participation Agreement with each charity they would like to support in just a few minutes.
Making it simple, quick and sustainable for small businesses to integrate purpose into the business and donate to charity they care most about.